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Routes in Northwest Face

Big Boys Don't Cry T 5.10c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b R
Crying Time Again T 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Direct Northwest Face T 5.10b/c 6b 20 VII 20 E2 5b
Edgeumacated T,S 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a
John Henry T 5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Mega Bleam S 5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a
Northwest Books T 5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b
Sandbag T 5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c PG13
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Type: Trad, 4 pitches
FA: unknown
Page Views: 11,150 total · 80/month
Shared By: bbrock on Feb 24, 2007
Admins: M. Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer suchoski, Justin Johnsen, Vicki Schwantes

You & This Route

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Access Issue: Yosemite National Park has yearly closures for Peregrine Falcon Protection March 1- July 15 Details


Awesome moderate knob pulling. Even though this climb has bolts I would not consider it a sport climb. The bolts can be almost impossible to see at times even if they are five feet in front of you. The last pitch has several different options. 5.9 R or 10a safely bolted.


This route starts to the left of The Northwest Face route. Walk off the top slab and back around


Light rack, quick draws, and runners
Scotty Nelson
Scotty Nelson   Boulder
As of 7/21/07, I think somebody pinched the rap ring from the bolts at the top. I left a biner to make the rope pull easier, but that might get pinched too. Would suggest somebody replacing this with a big rap ring. Jul 23, 2007
Anthony Stout
Albuquerque, NM
Anthony Stout   Albuquerque, NM  
Several pitches can be linked with a 60 meter rope. We did this climb in three long pitches, although I would not at all recommend this! The first and second pitches were easy links. The third and fourth, it really sucked! REALLY BAD ROPE DRAG! The fifth and sixth were good to link up (we did the 10a variation). So if you want to link pitches, I would recommend doing it in four pitches rather than three (1 and 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6). Sep 12, 2007
jonathan howland
San Francisco
jonathan howland   San Francisco
A Crying Time rack: one red C3, one blue TCU, one green C4 and a red or yellow C4 (for the anchor below the 5.9 knobs pitch), 6 draws, 6 slings with two biners on each.
To avoid rope drag (with a 60m rope): link P1 & P2, belaying at two bolts just below and right of the first 5.9 move; belay again on the large ledge below the 5.9 knobs pitch (anchor with Camalots) - a short 70' pitch; then 3 more pitches to the top, each belay at a two bolt anchor. Jun 28, 2008
Andy Laakmann
Bend, OR
  5.10a PG13
Andy Laakmann   Bend, OR  
  5.10a PG13
Fabulous face climbing. A must do.

We linked as Anthony describes (1 and 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6) and it worked perfectly.

The only true runout move on the climb is the 5.7 mantle after the crux on P2. A fall from there would be bad. The rest of the route was very well protected.

Bring a light rack - nuts and one set of small to #2 camalot. Most, if not all, the gear is placed on P1/P2. All anchors are fixed if you link as described. Jul 20, 2009
Cory Harelson
Boise, ID
  5.9+ PG13
Cory Harelson   Boise, ID
  5.9+ PG13
This climb is fantastic. Every pitch was fun to climb. We did the Cry Baby variation to the 1st pitch, which was fun climbing with enough distance between bolts to get your attention. The mantel move on the third (second for us) pitch isn't that bad. The tricky moves are actually before the mantel when you're still fairly close to the bolt. The last "10a" pitch felt pretty soft for .10a, it's bolted like a gym climb and you basically follow a series of large positive edges up a steep wall. Sep 7, 2009
Dustin B
Dustin B   Steamboat
Great route. There was a conga line up the direct route and my partner and I climbed this as a backup. Turned out to be a blessing. We had the route to ourselves. Much more asthetic line than the direct and the climbing was excellent. Guess that pesky 'R' letter in supertaco kinda keeps the crowds away. Also, we linked the pitches as 1,2&3,4,5&6. Went nice and smooth, not much drag. Sep 24, 2009
Andy Laakmann
Bend, OR
  5.10a PG13
Andy Laakmann   Bend, OR  
  5.10a PG13
Linking 2/3 and 4/5 definitely the way to go. Jul 15, 2010
Los Alamos, NM
Aerili   Los Alamos, NM
While linking the 5th and 6th pitches (10a variation), I never did notice a belay station between them anyway.

All run-outs are on relatively easy terrain; this route is well bolted by Tuolumne standards. Eight draws are just enough to link the last two pitches together, but you will have nothing left for the anchor, so bring additional slingage.

A good route, but I still found Direct Northwest better. Jul 19, 2010
glorious climb! Just need three cams, green C4 for the flake zone on P4, green C3, and yellow or red C3 for the belay. Went to second belay via Cry Baby, a fun way to get your head screwed on right and some fun knobby moves in a sea of stone. Final pitch is tons of fun. Aug 5, 2010
Dan Lautzenheiser
Henderson, NV
  5.10a R
Dan Lautzenheiser   Henderson, NV
  5.10a R
RP's or tiny cams can make the runout(s) on the 2.5/3rd pitch less scary. Oct 5, 2011
Shawn Heath
Forchheim, Germany
Shawn Heath   Forchheim, Germany  
Each route description on Mountain Project needs to answer 3 primary questions: Where is it? What is the run of the route? (best answered with a Beta picture or Topo) and What do I need to protect it? This route description only answers the last question (kind of, the comments are really where the answer comes from) and as a result I wasn't able to do the climb while I was there because I couldn't find it nor did I know how the route went. There are lots of pictures of people in this route but no one has posted a single Beta photo! Oct 1, 2012
Crimper E6
cheltenham, UK, SW is the BEST
Crimper E6   cheltenham, UK, SW is the BEST
pointless wandering line! and badly bolted.. probably the hype didnt help Oct 19, 2012
Erik Gearhart
Seattle, WA
Erik Gearhart   Seattle, WA
This route can be quite scary, actually. Of course the first pitch is run out slab, but even the last pitch or two, I remember, are rather gripping. Aug 19, 2013
Jason Albino
San Francisco, CA
  5.10a PG13
Jason Albino   San Francisco, CA
  5.10a PG13
(referring to p1 as the leftward-traverse pitch, as opposed to the initial scramble from the base of the dome...)

Confirming that there are no currently rap rings on the bolts at the top of the line. I think it would be nice to have them there to avoid the somewhat steep/unfriendly-on-the-feet friction walkoff - there are already rings on the other necessary anchors anyway "for retreat only". Could be a good option if it's a weekday/not busy and thus rapping the route is not disruptive to anyone. Given the walkoff option, if intending to do another line on Lembert directly after this one, it might not be a bad idea to skip the final excellent-but-short p5 to the top, and instead rap off the route from the p4 anchor with a few quick double-rope rappels back to the base.

Used very little gear on this other than QDs - a single rack from yellow Metolius to #1 BD would suffice, along with perhaps a small straight or offset cam or two in case you feel the need to wiggle in some bonus pieces in a couple spots.

On P1, it looked like the more direct and fun way to go would have been to head straight up around the first bolt into the 5.8 variation (forgetting the name of this pitch that's in the SuperTopo - can someone add this to MP?). This would skip the rest of the runout left-ward traverse and the roundabout straight-up flake climbing that proceeds it on the standard line. Tricky to spot the first bolt on the variation though, so look very carefully if this is desired.

On P3, I accidentally got suckered (by a bolt I spotted) into going left and then up instead of straight, and wound up on some seriously scary runout 5.10a R climbing, protected by nothing but some VERY spaced-out ancient leeper-hanger bolts. Anyone know what that line is? It seems to continue up the following two pitches as well in the Supertopo, though I don't see a route name for those pitches.

In any case, thankfully the end of said pitch resulted in a ledge with a new-ish bolted anchor just ~12 feet or so left of the intended Crying Time p3 anchor, so we were able to re-join the intended line from there.

Overall, a terrific climb with mentally-engaging, sustained climbed. Rarely was there a bomber rest on pitches 2-5, but it's much more pumpy on the calves than the arms! Sep 4, 2015
Back in the summer of 1978, Julie Brugger and I put up a direct finish to the climb. Since we thought we were doing the actual finish we didn't bring a bolt kit. That would have been nice.

Anyway, you climb directly up from the big ledge 20' to a bolt(back then it was a 1/4", it might be replaced by now). From there continue straight up on good rock with good edges(5.10a) for about 20-25' to a good ledge(4"x12") where you can rest. Next, head up and sightly right for another 60' following good, positive edges to the top(some sections of 5.10-).

There is no protection on this pitch, other than the first bolt, so be careful. BTW, this is the middle finish in Chris Falkenstein's guide. Feb 18, 2016
Golden, Co
Keradactyl   Golden, Co
The name fits.

We did the entire route in two big pitches followed by a tiny itty bitty pitch at the end. Jun 3, 2016
Jan Tarculas
Riverside, Ca
Jan Tarculas   Riverside, Ca
Did this on July 2, 2018. Started late around 10-11? We were surprise no one else was on the route or on Direct Northwest Face. We had the entire side of the dome to ourselves

My buddy accidentally linked 1/2/3 and I linked 5/6 together with a 70m

I recommend 1, link 2/3 and 5/6 to avoid rope drag Jul 5, 2018

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